Cycling enthusiasts buy property in Festus area for public trails and commercial ventures | Local News

Cycling supporters Chris and Rene Creed of Festus have purchased an 820-acre property off Plattin Road south of Festus where they plan to create cycling, hiking and nature trails for public use.

The two own and operate the Pedal’n Pi bike and pizzeria in Crystal City and operate the non-profit group Living Life on 2 Wheels which promotes biking and provides bikes to schools so students can learn to ride.

The Creeds have long wanted to create a place where people can bike, hike and enjoy nature and have taken a step further to make it a reality.

“We have purchased property and Express Mart will be fundraising for us so we can build trails on the property,” Chris Creed said. “We acquired it at the end of 2021. We bought it from my father-in-law, Gary Surdyke.”

Creed declined to say how much he and his wife paid for the property.

The Creeds do not yet have a target date for opening the trails.

“It just depends on fundraising,” Chris Creed said. “We are also hoping for grants.”

Home Service Oil, which operates Express Mart stores throughout the county, began its fundraising effort for the trail project on March 11 and, as of Monday, March 28, had raised $11,398.12, a gate said. -word of the company.

The fundraising effort calls on participants to contribute financially to the project by purchasing bike cutouts for $1 or $5 at area Express Mart stores.

Additionally, Express Mart and Home Service Oil will host a fall fishing tournament on behalf of Living Life on 2 Wheels, the spokeswoman said.

In addition to public trails, Chris Creed said a residential development could eventually be built on the property, along with other commercial ventures, such as a campground and a National Interscholastic Cycling Association running course.

“We’re looking to have an adventure community with accommodations, maybe,” Chris Creed said.

He said part of the inspiration for the project is the community of Bentonville, Ark., which he considers a mecca for adventure activities.

“If we invest in this kind of infrastructure, everyone will benefit,” Creed said.

He said plans call for trails to be built first.

“Developing trails for cycling and walking/hiking that are open to the public is our first priority,” Creed said. “Living Life on 2 Wheels will have a trail easement that will allow the nonprofit to develop these trails, maintain these trails, and provide them free to the public.”

Rene Creed said she thought the proposed facility would attract people to the area.

“Families need more outdoor adventures to get rid of their devices and get back to nature,” she said. “Cycling is synonymous with both mental and physical well-being. Studies have shown it. Why wouldn’t Jefferson County want that? »

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